Today, we feel fortunate enough if we see our kids reading something. As they get older they usually develop a love / hate relationship with reading. They either love it. Or they hate and do it anyway. At least until they graduate high school. If were lucky, they’ll stick with it until after college.
Because of this love / hate relationship we don’t always pay attention to what our kids are reading. A lot of us develop the “they’re reading, that’s all that counts” attitude. Which if your kids are reading, that’s wonderful. What they are reading… well, that’s up to you.
I don’t remember what I read as a child.
I do, however, remember that from about ninth grade on, all I read was romance novels. Okay, may 90% were romance novels. The other 10% was actually my book work for school. My best friend gave me a romance novel that she had borrowed from her mother. I loved it. It was an adventure. There were stories of pirates and stole away brides. There were stories of outlaws and damsels in distress. There were stories of knights in shining armor saving princesses….
If only my mother knew what I had been reading.
And my teachers, they all knew. I used to sit in History class with my text book tilted up and my Harlequin romance novel tucked between the pages. My history teacher didn’t care. I turned in my work. I passed my tests, and at study hall I read my novels.
These weren’t the kind of books you could get at the school library. So whenever my parents went to town, I went to the library. I got them from yard sales and flea markets. I read every one of them.
My mother knew what I was reading, but what I don’t think she ever realized was how detailed those pages got for a teenage girl.
So what does it matter what a kids reads as long as they’re reading?
John Wooden once said, “Five years from now, you’re the same person except for the people you’ve met and the books you’ve read.”
In other words:
What your kids are reading today, will influence who they become.
I’m still a romantic at heart, but I’ll take the swashbuckling, princess rescuing adventures any day.